Elected leaders, business members gather in ‘relaxed’ setting


By Wendy Byerly Wood - [email protected]



Elkin Commissioner Bob Norton, left, local businessman Jerry Stroud, center, and Ronda Mayor Victor Varela mingle during the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’ elected officials reception Thursday night at Cedarbook Country Club.


Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

Local business members and elected officials gather at Cedarbrook Country Club for the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’s elected officials reception Thursday.


Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

Local businesswoman Ann Ashman speaks with Jeff Yockel, board member for the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce, at the chamber’s elected officials reception Thursday.


Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

Mike Fenley, left, field representative for Sen. Richard Burr, talks with Ken Gulaian, owner of Round Peak Vineyard and Skull Camp Brewer, Thursday during the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’s elected officials reception.


Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

The time was designated for networking, meeting with constituents and elected officials, and sharing a time of fellowship in a relaxed environment.

Thursday night served as the annual elected officials reception held by the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce at Cedarbrook Country Club, with a room full of chamber members taking time to meet and greet, hold discussions and talk about issues in an informal setting with elected leaders.

“We feel it is very important to provide a relaxed atmosphere where constituents can talk to elected officials where they are informal,” said Myra Cook, president of the chamber. “We always want it to be comfortable without speeches and to feel like they’re with friends and family.”

Despite competing with the ACC Tournament this year, a good crowd enjoyed hors d’oeuvres, drinks, and conversations, with elected officials present from Ronda, Elkin, Jonesville, Pilot Mountain, Dobson, Surry County, Sens. Richard Burr’s and Thom Tillis’ offices, and Elkin’s school board.

“Normally it is January, but about three years ago it snowed and some people didn’t think they were going to get home, so this is the first year it’s been in March,” said Cook of the decision to change the timing of the event.

“Usually I come to support the chamber, and personally I come to represent the Small Business Center and Surry Community College and stay connected with the movers and shakers, because those are the people who are important,” said Denise ***.

Cook said another advantage is everyone can discuss the challenges going on without feeling defensive or like they are being attacked.

“I like the relaxed atmosphere, because so much of what we go to is structured,” Brown added.

Wendy Byerly Wood may be reached at 336-258-4035 or on Twitter @wendywoodeditor.

Elkin Commissioner Bob Norton, left, local businessman Jerry Stroud, center, and Ronda Mayor Victor Varela mingle during the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’ elected officials reception Thursday night at Cedarbook Country Club.
http://elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_elected-officials-1.jpgElkin Commissioner Bob Norton, left, local businessman Jerry Stroud, center, and Ronda Mayor Victor Varela mingle during the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’ elected officials reception Thursday night at Cedarbook Country Club. Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

Local business members and elected officials gather at Cedarbrook Country Club for the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’s elected officials reception Thursday.
http://elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_elected-officials-2.jpgLocal business members and elected officials gather at Cedarbrook Country Club for the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’s elected officials reception Thursday. Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

Local businesswoman Ann Ashman speaks with Jeff Yockel, board member for the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce, at the chamber’s elected officials reception Thursday.
http://elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_elected-officials-4.jpgLocal businesswoman Ann Ashman speaks with Jeff Yockel, board member for the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce, at the chamber’s elected officials reception Thursday. Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

Mike Fenley, left, field representative for Sen. Richard Burr, talks with Ken Gulaian, owner of Round Peak Vineyard and Skull Camp Brewer, Thursday during the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’s elected officials reception.
http://elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_elected-officials-5.jpgMike Fenley, left, field representative for Sen. Richard Burr, talks with Ken Gulaian, owner of Round Peak Vineyard and Skull Camp Brewer, Thursday during the Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce’s elected officials reception. Wendy Byerly Wood | The Tribune

By Wendy Byerly Wood

[email protected]

Elkin Tribune
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